Merry Christmas Eve! I’m about to install the Thule gutter mounts for a roof rack. I’m wondering what size gutter feet people have used. 5″, 8″ or 11″? Pros/Cons? Instinctively I’m thinking about the 11″ so the roof fan has a chance to open as far as possible. …but I’m not sure.
8″ seem to be standard, I have those, too. Considered the 11″ once, but dropped those because of the raise of the center of gravity (and resulting negative impact on towing safety) when having a payload on my small and light trailer. I have no breaks on the trailer, and the hitch is unstabilized, so the trailer has to be safety-optimized per arrangement.
There might be another safety aspect regarding the height. Let’s say you put the max. payload on the roof racks. When you have to make an emergency break, you’ll have much higher forces at the camper shell when you have 11″ instead of 8″ (due to 38% more leverage) – one might want to check with CLC if that’s within the calculated margins.
Another thought: any height restrictions to be expected where you’re going? In Europe, we sometimes have 2.1m / 7ft at parking lots and side roads, to keep oversize vehicles out.
Thanks, @johannes, for the great explanation. Part of what I’m considering is a 180 or 270 awning — and we’re tall people. I’m 6’4″ and my wife is 6″. So I theoretically want some headroom under whatever awning I mount to the roof rack.
I have Thule square bars already from a previous application. So I don’t need the “R” version of the foot pack(s). So, I’m sort of deciding between 8″ and 11″.
By the way, the camper with ANY roof rack will not fit in my garage. So I’m looking at mounting this gear before a trip — or keeping the camper outside under some kind of cover.
Totally see the desired headroom, I’m 6’3″. Bought an ARB awning + tent I’d also like to have at 7ft clearance. I could not find fitting L-brackets yet, so I’ll probably order some custom ones from the local steelwork companies, or make some from fiberglass myself. Thinking of a hinged version to keep the height low when driving, but I still have to figure out the best way to do it.